Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Random Thoughts

I didn't get any new comics today because stupid Victoria Day slowed them up. I'll be getting them tomorrow. The wait is agonizing. I do have the new Spirit, though, because Darwyn Cooke is nice and gave us all one. I'm going to read it in a second, but first some random thoughts on things.

1. The Dark Knight Marketing Campaign

It seems that The Dark Knight marketing team has unleashed a teaser promotional campaign so clever that I thought for sure it was a fan-made hoax. It's simply too interesting. You can get a good run-down of it by clicking on this link.

Basically it combined the release of this image:

...with this secret website that saavy net-surfing comic nerds discovered:

And finally this hidden image, giving us our first official photo of the new Joker:

I don't know how I feel about the look of the new Joker. I think, and have said all along, that Heath Ledger is a great casting choice and will do a good job. [EDIT - this is a total lie...I went on record voicing my concern about the casting choice last year, but I can't remember ever actually feeling that way]. I also know that The Dark Knight is a movie and not a cartoon or a comic book, and the character of The Joker needs to blend in with all that. So the make-up artists are faced with the challenge of creating a Joker for the screen that doesn't look like a cartoon character in the middle of a bunch of gritty realism. (For the record, I really loved Batman Begins, and appreciate and understand that a movie cannot possibly give comic fans everything they would want to see on screen. There will never be a definitive Batman movie, but there already is one high quality one and I am looking forward to seeing two more).

So keeping all that in mind...I still don't think I like this Joker, based on first appearances. But that's possibly more the fault of the photo itself, which looks like a Tool poster. The marketing campaign was brilliant, and damn near perfect, but the problem is...this Joker does not look like the same Joker that would deface Harvey Dent's campaign poster, litter a comic book shop with playing cards, and set up a creepy website. It would have been a little more fun to have the camera angle coming from above, and having him look up at the camera with a creepy expression. It would have been a lot more familiar as a Joker image.

Aw, listen to me. Nitpicking like some sort of comic nerd. I'm just happy these movies are getting made. And I really do appreciate the fun promotional stuff. I seriously can't wait for this movie.

2. The Smallville Season Six Finale

I know you all really watch and care about Smallville. Sometimes I feel like they are making new episodes only for me. I watched the finale the other night and, well, I'm just going to lay down some mad spoilers because nobody on Earth cares.

- Smallville, you do it to me every year. You throw episode after episode of mediocrity at me, making me swear I'm going to stop watching, and then you hit me with a Superman-related finale/cliffhanger that guarantees my loyalty for another year. Because sometimes I need to be reminded that the show is about Superman. This year's Superman reference? Bizarro! I was very excited by the final shot of Bizarro Clark flying at the camera.
I was less excited by this very clunky exchange:

Clark: Who are you?
Bizarro Clark: I'm you, only a little more bizarre.

Ouch. There has to be a better way to get that information across. He could have at least talked like Bizarro. Then it would have been cute instead of embarrassing.

- Is Lana really and truly dead? That would be so fantastic. But even more fantastic would have been if Lois had died. Everyone knows Chloe is a better Lois Lane than Lois Lane will ever be. The character suuuuuuuucks and makes no sense! She lives and works in Smallville, yet still calls Clark "Smallville." The sexual tension between Clark and Chloe is the most compelling thing on the entire show, and yet it is almost totally ignored. If Lois were killed off, the viewers could be rewarded by the revelation that Chloe is going to be the real and future Lois Lane (she could take her cousin's name...or whatever. Just make it happen, writers! Know your audience! We deserve a happy ending!).
Chloe had better not be dead. I will seriously stop watching the show. You hear that, Smallville? 50% of your audience will be gone, just like that! And it looks like Lionel will make it back for another season, which is dope. Lex is just boring now, which is too bad. But there will be some awesome hatred between he and Clark over this whole Lana thing. Unless she's still alive. Which she probably is. *sigh*

- I think season 6 was the best season yet, overall. Definitely some terrible episodes (Clark battles flawed immigration policy, anyone?), but I loved Green Arrow and Martian Manhunter and Jimmy Olsen and the Phantom Zone and Zod and the whole Justice League episode. It was fun.
Plus, Allison Mack completely rocked the house as Chloe all season, and had the best wardrobe I've seen on a character since the Mary Tyler Moore Show.

So yeah, I'll be back next season. As long as Chloe is there. And after next season ends there should be a spin-off called Chloe and Lionel where they are roommates and solve mysteries. It would fill the void that comes from Veronica Mars being canceled (boooooooo!!!).

Smallville doesn't really ever give me what I want out of a young Superman show, but I love them for trying.

3. Adam Hughes Weighs In

Hughes did an interview over at Newsarama about the whole MJ statue thing. He's surprised about how much attention this thing got. Frankly, so am I. Even when I did my post on the statue, I never expected to even get two comments, much less a quote in the New York Post, for chrissake. I wouldn't even say that I was outraged. More like...I have a comedy-based blog about comic books, and that thing was way too ridiculous to not post about. It's not like it was at all surprising. I mean...the thong is still a little surprising to me. It's just so...trashy.

Anyway, you can check out that link above and read the interview. I like Adam Hughes as an artist quite a bit. I will say this, however: Adam, dude, you may not want to bring racism into this argument. I understand what you're trying to say, start trying to carry things in that direction, and you're just going to come off sounding crazy.

And that's the last I'm going to say about that thing.


Anonymous said...

I think the Joker is actually pretty cool! See, he just went mad, so he's just starting out, and he's still sloppy with his makeup, because he doesn't care.

Also, as the Harvey Dent poster has shown, his abilities with MS Paint is incomparable. Also go back to . Yeah, the Joker's HTML skills are incomparable.

Theresa said...

I actually like the picture of Joker. He looks like a real psycho. It doesn't bother me that his proposed actions don't mesh with his look. Psychos are often inconsistent like that. LOL

But I can't believe you think this season of Smallville was the best, and not seasons one or two! LOL This season was very inconsistent with the characterizations, and did a complete injustice to Lex. And so much Lana! Icky! LOL And that's besides the problems with Martha, Lionel, and the fact that Clark whined the whole season, and barely progressed as a person or a hero past his stupid "love" of Lana, which compprised the whole damn season. Then there was the overall fact that absolutely nothing about anyone's circumstances -- from Clark still being in Smallville, to no one being in school, to Lana shacking up with Lex, having no job and not being in school, to Chloe having the run of the planet as an intrepid high school graduate -- made sense. This season was entertaining--as long as your expectations were nill.

But, you know, if you want the season, you can have it. LOL

rachelle said...

Oh, you and your sensible arguments, Theresa. Nothing about this season made sense, and it's true that I miss the adorable friendship between Clark and Lex of season 1 and 2. Actually, Season 3 is probably my favourite season, overall, but I did really like season 6 because it was the most comic booky season. There was a lot of Lana, but there was even more Chloe. And Lana dies at the end (fingers crossed).
I just think they were a lot better this season with things like continuity. And I liked how they did things like reveal that Chloe is a mutant. And stuff.

I think that the Joker is going to look cool in the movie, I just find that to be a very disappointing first image. Definitely creepy-looking, though.

Anonymous said...

Hi. Would you consider writing a post about all of your interactions w/ Darwyn Cooke? The guy's totally cool, right? Does he come in telling jokes? put down other comics? I need to know these things. Thanks, Alex

The Mutt said...

I like the look of the Joker. His classic comic look just won't work on film, unless you can find an actor with a skull shaped like a light bulb.

My problem with the campaign is that it might give people the idea that Dent is the Joker.

Adam said...

It would be cool if they didn't turn Harvey Dent into Two Face at all in this movie, his Attorney General role has alot of potential and would make it that much more heart wrenching when he eventually gets turned. Also, Batman could use some fwends.

This Joker almost looks like they are going for the level of creepy that was the Clown character from the Nighthawk mini series. Dunno how they could handle having a disturbed serial killer that is that dark and still keep it PG-13.

SallyP said...

Lana is dead? Huzzah! I'm glad, do you hear me? GLAD! Boy, I sure do hate Lana.

Please, Chloe isn't dead, and neither is Lois, and unfortunately, neither is Lana.

About the only thing that I liked this season was Ollie and the rest of the Justice league. That final "strut" when they all blow up Lex's lab was just lovely. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, the actor who portrayed Oliver has the quintessential Joe Staton jaw line.


Roy said...

Ah. Joker mostly just looks so sad in that picture. I want to give him some delicious ice cream and a big hug!

Heather said...

I really don't think both Lana and Chloe are going to be dead. Mostly because who is Clark going to talk to next year if they are? Lionel, Jimmy, and Lois? But that would make sense since with no Martha next year, there really is no reason for Clark to be spending all his time on the farm. Maybe he'll actually go back to school and start on that whole journalism thing?

grandpaboy said...

That's the first I've seen of the new film Joker, but doesn't it look like he's scarred up on the side of his cheeks? Like he's tried to "open up" his smile, reaver-style? That idea creeps the hell out of me.

rachelle said...

It's definitely a scary-looking Joker. The Joker terrifies me anyway, and the thought of bringing a realistic version of him to the screen gives me the willies. I'm looking forward to it, though.

rachelle said...

Alex - I don't have many good stories about Darwyn Cooke. He comes into the store fairly regularly. He's nice. He gives me comics. He's...opinionated. And...likes to voice his opinions. But, yeah. Super nice guy. He always puts in long hours whenever he does a signing and always does a ton of sketches for fans at those things. And they all look amazing.

Derek said...

I think what I find disappointing about the new Joker image is that he's not smiling. He's not creepy if he's not smiling.

He just looks like a little boy who got into mommy's lipstick.

Anonymous said...

No way is Lana dead. That truck that drove by right before the car blew up definitely had her on/in it before the car blew. Did she stage her own death, or did someone else? -Mike

Mark said...

You're absolutely right--if Chloe is written out of the show, I'm gone in a heartbeat. I loves me some Chloe. She is my reason for watching. Allison Mack is teh hot, and Chloe is by far the best character on the show.

I don't believe for a moment that Lana is dead. I think she staged her death, knowing that that's the only way Lex wouldn't chase her down. (I have to say, the Lana of the last few episodes, where she began acting like a Luthor--keeping secrets, manipulating people, etc--FINALLY made her interesting. For once I DON'T want her dead.)

On the other hand, unless Lana is completely ruthless, there's going to be a distinct lack of a body in the wreckage, so her faked death is only going to buy her a little time.

rachelle said...

The only reason why I think Lana might be dead is because the producers said that one of the four major characters die in the finale. I actually know it isn't Chloe, because they have released some spoilers about what Chloe is going to be doing next season. Plus, I get the feeling that Kristen Kreuk might want to move on to other things or something. I dunno.

I guess that the finale was Martha's last episode? I didn't even know. Her being a senator is the weirdest plot line in the history of television.

Chloe rules!

Mark Jones said...

I don't believe for an instant that they'd kill Lana for real. No matter how tired I--uh, I mean, the fans--get of the Clark-n-Lana on-again, off-again relationship, the producers clearly will never, ever be done with it.

But as I said, if Lana remains a Luthor at heart, scheming and manipulating and keeping secrets, I could get to like her. Otherwise, I wish they would put her out of my misery.

Chloe will be back? Yay! I have a reason to keep watching Smallville!

Son of Blog-El said...

Count me as one of the people that enjoy Smallville. I did not come onboard until last season, so I had low expectations. I do like the comic book elements that they have put in the show, which, honestly is probably what got me watching the show. Lana doesn't engender rage in me like other people on the web, but I do wish that Chloe and Clark would get together. My thought with the cliffhanger is that Chloe's essence is now in Lois. In other words, Lois got a personality transplant.

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Kassandra said...

I'm totally stalking your blog. I just hooked into it yesterday. We read a lot of the same books. I'm not sure I would put in the effort to read the Titans if I hadn't been for years, though. It's just so lame without Roy.

This comment is really about your Chloe on SV remarks, though. You pretty much expressed my exact thoughts on all of that for me. I even thought before they brought Lois on that the plot would actually be Chloe becoming Lois out of tribute...but then I remembered it was Smallville and the writers hate the audience.

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